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Providing good customer service is vital to the success of almost every company. This is because in the modern world, businesses have to place greater priority on customer service to distinguish themselves from other competing companies. The demand is expected to increase by as much as 15% by 2020.
Technology is a two-edged sword. It reduces the need for some jobs, while increasing, or even creating new jobs at the same time. For example: The rise of online banking has decreased the demand for brick-and-mortar banks, with their associated offices, upkeep, etc…But it has increased the number of customer service representatives, who also assist client with using the website, as well as other financial issues. The rise of social media like Facebook, and live chat is increasing the need for customer contacts.
Customer Services Jobs – Call Center Jobs
Another area of rapid growth within the Customer Service field is the Call Center. The demand for Customer Service Representatives in Call Centers is expected to grow by as much a 46%, far outstripping the other areas. This is due to industry growth, and the increasing need for Technical Support, which is also customer service. Many business are now hiring Call Center firms to handle their customer service needs.
What are employment opportunities like for customer services representatives?
Employment opportunities for Customer Service representatives is also expect to increase due to the advent of new and improved technologies, and products. In the modern world, 6 months is a lifetime, as far as technology goes. It wasn’t very long ago that a CD with 700 MB of memory storage was considered huge. Now, USB flash drives, smaller than a set of fingernail clippers, can have 128 GB or more of memory, which is more memory than an entire average computer hard drive of just 10 years ago had. These new products and technologies require lots of customer service, as consumers learn to use them.
According to the US Bureau of Labor, job prospects for Customer Service Representatives look very good for the immediate future. In 2010, there were 2,187,300 people working as Customer Service Representatives. In 2020, there is expected to be 2,535,600 jobs, meaning an increase of 338,400 new positions that will be available. This is a 15% increase.
As of 2012, around 10% of US employees work from home. This is a phenomenon that is expected to grow rapidly. Almost 1/3 of all US Customer Service representatives now work from their homes. This has many advantages. It saves companies around $2000.00 per year, per employees to have them work at home. This is from less days lost to sickness, higher employee job satisfaction and much less employee turn-over, as much as 50% less on average. Also, people who work from home seem to be more productive, by as much as 15% in some cases. On the downside, working at home results in less promotions, by as much as 30%. Working at home is not for everybody.Some have trouble with the loss of socialization common in most work environments. And some people just can’t work without being directly supervised.
Fortunately, there will be enough jobs available for both in the coming years.